SIBA say the award showcases “pubs or bars which have shown an extraordinary commitment to serving the best quality and range of independent beers”.

On winning the award, owners Claire and Tim Whalley said "We're incredibly proud to be named the UK's Best Independent Craft Beer Bar (City) by SIBA. Winning this award is wonderful recognition for all the hard work that we, and our fantastic team put into Craft Republic. We were up against bars in Liverpool, Birmingham and London so to be bringing the title to South Wales is fantastic."

Owned by the Barry Island couple, Craft Republic was a passion project that was 7 years in the planning. The couple, who had no experience in the hospitality industry, left their corporate jobs to pursue the dream of building the bar that they themselves wanted in their hometown, putting their life savings into the project.

Opening in August 2020 as part of the Goodsheds development in Barry, Craft Republic has had to deal with the highs and lows of starting a new business in the pandemic, including only being able to operate as a shop at times.

Located in a converted railway goods shed a short walk from Barry Island, the bar is completely independent and not affiliated with any breweries. As well as featuring a state-of-the-art Direct Draw system pouring 14 lines of craft draught beer and cider, the bar has an extensive wine, cocktail and spirits list including Barry Island Rum and Vodka, and their Great Taste award-winner Barry Island Gin which was developed by Claire and Tim. In addition to being a bar, Craft Republic has a shop and online store holding over 100 different beers, ciders, wines and spirits - all from independent producers.

“It’s been a challenging time to open a hospitality business” Claire says, “the last two years have been a rollercoaster but we’re lucky to be surrounded by an incredible community in Barry who have supported us through the toughest moments”.

The latest award from SIBA is not the first accolade for the Barry bar. In 2021 they won the Best Bar category in the Cardiff Life Awards and were a finalist for Best Retailer. They are also a finalist for the Best Bar category in the 2022 awards. For the husband-and-wife team, gaining national recognition for Craft Republic is the icing on the cake.

Neil Walker, SIBA Business Awards Chair of Judges said “A huge, huge congratulations to the winners in the SIBA Business Awards 2022. We had a record number of entries, and the quality was higher than ever, so these really are the very best in the industry and should be so proud of the achievement.”
Craft Republic was up against Dead Crafty Beer Co. in Liverpool, The Colmore in Birmingham, and The Pembury Tavern in East London to win the award.

Winning Smiles

Craft Republic is an award-winning independent bar situated in the Goodsheds development, Barry.  Owned by local husband-and-wife team Tim and Claire Whalley, Craft Republic features a state-of-the-art Direct draw system pouring 14 lines of fresh draught craft beer and cider. The bar also offers an extensive wine list and seasonally-changing cocktail menu. Craft Republic has bottle shop on site at the bar containing over 100 craft beers, ciders, wines and spirits, including Barry Island Gin, Rum and Vodka. Bookings can be made online at . For any additional information or pictures please contact Claire Whalley on .

SIBA, the Society of Independent Brewers, was established in 1980 to represent the interests of the growing number of independent breweries in Britain.
SIBA currently represents around 830 independent craft breweries and their vision is ‘to deliver the future of British beer’ as the ‘voice of British independent Brewing’.
As well representing independent craft brewing members in the press and lobbying government on behalf of brewers, SIBA also run regional and national independent beer awards for cask, keg, bottled and canned beers, host regional meetings for the benefit of members as well as the UK’s biggest beer & brewing trade event BeerX UK in Liverpool.

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